BRAZILIAN legend Ronaldo's agent has revealed just how close Rangers came to clinching what would have been the biggest Scottish transfer of all time almost 20 years ago.

And he uncovered details of the remarkable offer the Ibrox side gave to the three-time World Player of the Year in a £20m deal in 1997 when big-spending Rangers and Sir David Murray almost swooped to sign him from Barcelona.

Ronaldo had just completed his first season at Barcelona and had won the World Player of the Year award at the age of 20, but he was unhappy at his deal with the Nou Camp giants.

It was announced any club who were willing to buy out the remainder of his contract, which was worth £20m, were free to sign him and it came down a straight choice between Inter Milan, Lazio and Rangers.

His agent Giovanni Branchini recalled: "The clause in his contract was a novelty at the time and it scared a lot of clubs off.

"The three who were really interested were Inter, Lazio and Glasgow Rangers, who followed negotiations all the way.

"The offer from Glasgow Rangers was incredible.

"They told us he didn't have to play on a Saturday in the Scottish League. They were desperate to win the Champions League and were going to allow him to play in the European matches only.

"But Inter had followed him from when he used to play in Brazil. Barcelona reneged on a new contract and Inter were the first club to meet the release clause, so he went there."

Ronaldo went on to help Brazil win the World Cup in 2002 and eventually starred for Real Madrid.